Normal Attacks (通常技, Tsūjō-waza?, lit. Normal Technique), also colloquially called normals, are the most basic form of offense in the Guilty Gear series. Introduced in the original Guilty Gear, they correspond to the four-button—later five-button—layout: Punch, Kick, Slash, Heavy Slash, and Dust.
They require nothing more than a single press of a button, and are a player's main means of attacking. There is a different variation for each when done while standing, crouching, or jumping.
Punch (パンチ, Panchi?) is usually a fast move with low recovery and safe, but have little damage and reach, as well as high scaling. They usually can combo into themselves, and in some cases, into other normals on whiff. Standing punches are mainly fast, short-range pokes, or low risk anti-air attacks; crouching punches are usually fast, sometimes safe, and are good for okizeme; jumping punches are for short-range air confirms, rising anti-air, or air-to-air guard pressure.
Kick (キック, Kikku?) is the all-around button. Usually carries a myriad of functions, from anti-air, pokes, and sometimes standing low attacks. Usually can Gatling combo all around, or may even combo into a Sweep. Standing kicks strike a balance of speed and range; crouching kicks predominantly are most characters' quickest low normal with decent reach; jumping kicks tend to mostly be air-to-air pokes or jump-in buttons.
Slash (斬り, Kiri? or スラッシュ, Surasshu?) is a button that usually utilizes a character's weapon, meaning higher damage and ranged attacks. It has two variations, depending on if the character is close or far from its foe. Close slashes tend to be punish starters with big hitboxes, limited by their activation range; far-standing slashes are usually long-ranged pokes of moderate speed; crouching slashes range in utility from anti-airs, alternate pokes, or blockstring enders which are safe; jumping slashes vary from air-to-air or air-to-ground and slower than jumping kicks but higher reward.
Heavy Slash (大斬り, Daigiri? or ハイスラッシュ, Hai Surasshu?) is a high damage button with many purposes. They tend to: have the most range and damage, work best early in combos as they scale the least out of all buttons, and gain strong effects on Counter Hit (like launching, become untechable, or adding slide, bounce, or stagger). Standing heavy slashes tend to be a big ranged attack that are slow but powerful; crouching heavy slashes are usually a slow uppercut-like anti-air move or serves another purpose, sometimes they are safe or carry extra effects; jumping heavy slashes are very often a go-to for air combos.
Dust (ダスト, Dasuto?) is the fifth button, introduced in Guilty Gear XX. It is kind of a multi-purpose button; on the ground, it is used as a universal overhead (or Dust Attack) which can launch the opponent up for an air combo. It also can be used to do a Sweep attack that hits low, and in Strive, it is also used as part of normal Throw commands.